Yingdi, a Chinese web portal for card games, had a chance to interview Hearthstone's Dean Ayala this past month and they spoke about card balance, rng, and Demon Hunters. Czhihong translated the interview and posted it on reddit. We've recapped it down below.
- Looking back, Dean thinks they would have made more balance changes to Demon Hunters right away.
- We're getting another balance patch before the expansion arrives.
- Expect the expansion to shake up the Demon Hunter win rates the most.
- Zephrys the Great and Dragonqueen Alexstrasza decks have been called out. If they are top tier next expansion, changes may happen to those decks.
- Dragoncaster may be addressed in an upcoming patch.
- Galakrond, the Nightmare may receive a change to make the cards drawn cost (1) instead of the current (0).
- We should expect less randomly generated resources next year and even in the expansions later this year.
- The tools we have right now to generate resources is likely the highest it will ever be.
- Part of the issue is that the cards that generate resources right now are just really good so we see them all the time.
Here are some select quotes from the interview.
When all classes start generating resources outside their deck it makes the classes that specialize in resource generation like Priest or Mage feel less special.
Puzzlebox is probably the appropriate power level on its own but with Dragoncaster it's coming out a little earlier than we'd like in highly competitive decks. We'll likely look to address that in an upcoming patch.
Usually, when we make a card cost (0) it's a reward for building your deck in a particular fashion. We like to make those cards powerful so players are actually motivated to build their decks differently. In the case of Dragoncaster you end up including high mana spells that you might not have otherwise.
For Rogue's Galakrond, you get (0) mana cards but only because you put a large number of the other Galakrond cards in your deck. One issue that comes from having (0) mana cards is that they can result in really big unexpected swing turns. Rogue is probably the biggest offender of that right now when it plays a fully invoked Galakrond.
If the cards you drew off Galakrond cost (1), the card would obviously be less powerful but it would also result in a pause between the turn you play Galakrond and the turn you play all the cheap cards from your hand. This is a change we've been talking about making lately so that players have a turn to prepare rather than having to deal with so many resources all at once.
For Skull, I think those cards being reduced to (0) is less of a problem because Skull itself isn't also a tempo card. After your opponent plays a skull, they either play the cards that turn or hold them in hand to have a big swing turn later. In the case where they hold the cards, their opponent has some time to prepare which we think is healthy gameplay.